Category Archives: Meet the Artist

The inspiration for Los Gaiteros De San Jacinto’s music is rooted in tradition; technically, the band started 77 years ago. As they share in this Meet the Artist video, their music narrates their experiences growing up, “the villages, the farmers, and the men who work the land” in their native Colombia. That’s why it was such an honor for them to take the stage at Levitt Pavilion Los Angeles back in 2012 on Colombian Independence day.

Dedicated to preserving their culture, and encouraging the practice of traditional Colombian Cumbia – a genre that has become less ubiquitous as generations pass by – the GRAMMY-winning Los Gaiteros De San Jacinto is recognized as one of the most important musical groups from their native country. They have even recorded music on Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, a label that continues to press decades-old songs from the traditional North and South American songwriting canon.

The new generation of Los Gaiteros are passionate about bringing their music to the world, and spreading the joy of their music to cultures that aren’t typically exposed to Colombian Cumbia. Having an opportunity to perform at a community-building space like a Levitt Pavilion, for families from near and far, is a great joy for the group.

Meet more artists who have performed on Levitt stages on our website!


Last week we celebrated International Women’s Day by spotlighting a few of our favorite female artists, including several who’ve performed on Levitt stages. With Women’s History Month still in full swing, today we’re turning our attention to four more talented ladies. Blame Sally—an all-female collaboration of San Francisco-based singer-songwriters—is no stranger to Levitt stages. Since forming in 2000, the group has moved audiences across the globe with their rich harmonies, eclectic folk/pop/Americana instrumentation (from stompboxes to fiddles) and heartfelt performances—including at Levitt pavilions in Arlington, Texas (2011, 2009) and Pasadena Calif. (2014, 2010). Continue reading


Singer-songwriter Paul Thorn has a heavy touring schedule of about 150 shows a year, but what keeps the Southern rocker energized through it all is the “collaboration of joy” between artist and audience.  “I go out and try to lift people up,” he told us for this latest Meet the Artist video.

The Levitt veteran artist uses his music to spread positivity to the masses, because he knows that for many of his fans, there’s nothing like ending a long day with a night of music, especially at the Levitt Shell Memphis. It’s here where Thorn witnesses the power of music firsthand, with neighbors of all backgrounds coming together for a good time. “Magic,” indeed! 


Rocking and bopping across the country six months out of the year, the Emmy Award-nominated kindie rock group Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band share their music with the youngest of Levitteers! In 2014 and 2015 their tour stops included free concerts at both Levitt Pavilion Pasadena and Levitt Pavilion Los Angeles

In our latest Meet the Artist video, the band tells us why they love performing and making music for kids. “We have so many parents come up to us, beaming and totally joyful—like, ‘That was my kid’s first concert!’” said Alisha Gaddis, who co-founded the band with her husband Lucky Diaz. “It’s a really beautiful thing to be a part of their family’s memory and something that affected them so profoundly.”

Tonight, Lucky Diaz and the Family Jam Band returns to Levitt Pavilion Pasadena for its fifth Levitt concert, so bring out the kids for a hip-shaking good time! Want to learn more about Levitt artists? Check out the Levitt Foundation YouTube channel!

You might remember last summer’s Spotlight Series feature on Brave Combo, the genre-bending polka band that has wowed audiences for over 35 years. This week they’re highlighted in a new Meet the Artist video filmed at Levitt Pavilion Arlington, where the band has performed eight times including on the venue’s opening day back in 2008. Check out the video above to find out more about Brave Combo’s origins, eclectic musical style, and why they keep returning to perform at Levitt venues. Want to know more about this lively band’s history? Read below for five fun facts!

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Spotlight_Series_BizTomorrow night, Sheboygan is in for a real treat! At the Levitt AMP Sheboygan Music Series, presented by the John Kohler Arts Center, audiences will enjoy an evening of extreme printmaking, Zumba and hip-hop dance lessons and a performance by legendary hip-hop artist Biz Markie.

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We’re kicking off Black History Month spotlighting one of our favorite Levitt artists, the phenomenally talented Booker T. Jones—a musician whose creativity is matched by his courage. Jones made his Memphis debut at Levitt Shell in Memphis (then known as the Overton Park Shell) in 1968 with his GRAMMY-winning group, Booker T. and the M.G.’s. According to Rolling Stone, this group, made up of two black members and two white members, “became a symbol of racial integration in the South during the civil rights years.” Booker T. Jones and the M.G.’s were awarded the prestigious GRAMMY Lifetime Achievement Award in 2007 for helping to create the sound of the 1960’s and using notes to build bridges between people.

Our hats go off to Jones, who has always used his courage and creativity to push our nation’s musical and racial boundaries. Learn more about Jones in his Meet the Artist video.


Our Meet the Artist series is your backstage pass to some of your favorite Levitt artists. You’ve cheered them on at Levitt venues across the country, now go behind the scenes and learn who they are, where they come from and what inspires them.

This past summer, international Ghanaian reggae artist, Rocky Dawuni sent positive musical vibes all across southern California with his performances at Levitt Pasadena and Levitt Los Angeles. It marked his third time performing at Levitt Los Angeles, and second time taking the stage at Levitt Pasadena. We caught up with this talented artist at a recent Levitt concert, captured here in his Meet the Artist video. Here are just a few reasons why we love Dawuni: Continue reading

Since 2009, The Dunwell brothers—Joseph and David Dunwell—along with their best friend and cousins, Jonny Lamb, Dave Hanson and Rob Clayton, have been blending the rock sound of their hometown of Leeds, England, with Americana roots music as The Dunwells. This summer, they’ll be playing at both Levitt Pavilion Arlington (June 12) and Levitt Shell Memphis (June 15) with a date at Bonnaroo in between. To get a taste of what’s to come, hear more from the band in this new Meet this Artist video!


Here are three things you might not know about singer and guitarist LeRoy Bell: he’s written songs for Elton John, he’s competed on The X Factor and he’s brought his own special blend of rock and soul to TWO Levitt venues (Levitt Pavilion Pasadena & Levitt Pavilion Arlington). Hear from LeRoy and catch a couple of his tunes in this new Meet the Artist video!